The Lioness is featured in L&M Hospital’s Online Magazine, First Hand.

The first book in the Urwelt Chronicle series
The first book in the Urwelt Chronicle series

This recent article was written by Bill Hanrahan, L&M writer and photographer, as a personnel profile for First Hand, the L&M Hospital’s internal online magazine.  

Marian Lee, an L+M Hospital Chaplain, is also a weaver – a weaver of themes and cultures and ideas, all of which thread together in the words on the page of her first book, a fairy tale saga set in Wales, in a place called Brumley Hall, where a loving grandmother sometimes morphs into a lioness.

The 219-page book for “Tweens,” or middle-grade children, is titled The Lioness of Brumley Hall; And Her Most Unusual Grandchildren. On sale in the L+M Lobby Shop for $9.95, the self-published work stems from a lifelong literary passion, says August Pearson Benners (that’s Lee’s pen name on the book).

“Ever since I was in fourth grade I just had to write,” Lee says. “I kept journals with words and phrases, and I’ve always been fascinated with word play. I remember writing stories and having my teachers read them and give me feedback.”

That passion took flight one recent summer as Lee tried to decompress after a semester in Tampa, Florida working on a doctoral degree.

“I needed a break from academia,” she said. “Working on my Ph.D. was very intense. I was writing about five papers a semester, all academic writing, and I was reading a couple of books a week. So, over summer break, I just wanted to relax, but I couldn’t not write. I had had this book idea in my mind for a couple of years and it just suddenly all came together.”

While the book is aimed at kids grades 9 to 12, “It’s written sort of on two levels,” Lee says. “It’s a story about a magical family that works together to fight the evil king in the fairy world, so for kids it’s an action-fantasy-adventure. Then, I wrote it for my generation, too, with references that the kids might not necessarily get. So it’s a good read for grandparents and maybe parents as well.”

Themes woven through the chapters include environmental preservation, Celtic mythology, a touch of Buddhism and cultural diversity. There is a boy from a Jewish background and another character who is half Japanese, Lee says.

And, while Lee is a chaplain, “The book is not religious, although it does have spiritual concepts throughout,” she notes.

New to L+M in July, Lee has previous experience as a chaplain in Tampa, Florida. She moved back to the New England area in part because her son is stationed as an officer at the Submarine Base in Groton and because she missed the seasons and family nearby in Maine.

Lee says the work of being a chaplain is something that rivals her enthusiasm for the written word. Like the themes in her book, her work at L+M combines an appreciation and understanding for different cultures, religions and approaches to life.

As for the grandmother who turns into a lioness, that character is partly based on Lee’s own grandmother, an inspiration in Lee’s life. “She’s very present in the book,” Lee says. “My grandmother was a very straightforward, down-to-earth woman, but she often told me of her interesting mystical experiences, too, so she was open to the unseen world of spiritual experience.”

Lee will hold a book-signing at the New London Public Library at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 19. She is also looking into the possibility of holding a signing event at the Lobby Shop.

And, for those who read and like The Lioness of Brumley Hall, there’s good news. “It’s going to be a series,” Lee says. “I’m already three-quarters of the way through the second book.”

Musical Soundtrack For Your Reading Pleasure! Enjoy The Lioness’s Preface and First Chapter!

Booktrack large

Booktrack allows an author to create a soundtrack for their book.  I created one for The Lioness of Brumley and Her Most Unusual Grandchildren.  Now you can enjoy the preface and first chapter by reading along with a musical soundtrack and audio effects.  Click on the link below and enjoy!

https://www.booktrack.com/embed/04e0973922c14819a38243765fc74b4b

Five Ways to Attract the Faerie

Just Beyond the Veil
Just Beyond the Veil

My second book (still in the writing process) in the Urwelt Chronicles series, The Lioness and the Faerie Enchantment, features a greater integration of the Faerie and their particular magick into the story.  Phineas Treadworthy, a faerie seer from the land of Urwelt, comes to Brumley Hall causing a disconcerting amount of mayhem, but also bringing his special brand of merriment and magick. Faeries are not disneyfied, always benevolent creatures.  They are sentient beings of varied dispositions and sensitivities.  Some are small sprites with wings, while others take a human appearance.  For the most part they lie beyond the veil of our consciousness taking many mysterious forms.  Attaching themselves to certain geographical areas such as Europe and particularly to certain countries such as Ireland, Wales and Scotland (the Celtic world) they live their lives in close proximity to us under

Woodland Faeries by Richard Doyle
Woodland Faeries by Richard Doyle

secluded hills, deep within the surrounding woods and forests and in and about bodies of inland waterways such as lakes, ponds and rivers.  Their domains are spiritual and they seek to instruct us with the inner knowledge of our sacred role.  This role is to recognize and redeem our creative forces in serving the living magic of individual and collective integration within the whole of nature, both human and non-human. With this in mind, I have listed five ways to attract the Faerie.  There are others to be sure, but this is the beginning of the Faerie journey.

Under Secluded Hills in Celtic Lands
Under Secluded Hills in Celtic Lands
  1. Incorporate the Faerie into your domestic life, both ordinary and ritualistic.  This lessens the veil between our world and theirs and helps our connection to grow stronger.  By setting aside a special dwelling within the home and offering them food to their liking, such as milk, bread, honey, cake or apples, the household faeries will guard and protect your home from harm (theft, fire, and
    By Streams, Rivers and Lakes
    By Streams, Rivers and Lakes

    other damage).  Bring them into your holiday festivities and make them a part of your magickal practices.  Use herbs and roots such as mandrake which possess the Faerie spirit but beware to harvest it according to tradition to make use of its guardian energy.  Magickal ritual with the Faerie is a partnership and mutual exchange, not an authoritarian summoning.  The Faerie which is a force of nature cannot be commanded to do ones bidding. The exchange must be mutual.

  2. Communication is on their terms, not ours. The humanseekerwill be advised when the Faerie wish to communicate.  They are threshold beings living in the mists between the living and dead, inner and outer worlds and the gloaming (dawn or twilight). Contactmay be easier during times of the year when the veil is thinner such as All Hollows Eve and Beltane (Halloween and May Day).  They may also be present along the roads and trails that lead into and out of the Faerie world or in places they hold sacred.

    Communication When Ready
    Communication When Ready
  3. Respect sacred space guarded by the Faerie. Refine your consciousness through meditation andawarenessto be sensitive to such places.  Ecosystems such as woodlands and watersheds contain their own central point of intelligence where clusters of species have a potent affinity.  Attune to the inner power of place by honoring the balance and integrity of nature.  Respect this interlocking pattern of intelligence and walk lightly leaving no trace but your respectful footfalls behind.

    Leave Only Your Footfalls
    Leave Only Your Footfalls
  4.  Develop powers of the Faerie. Cultivate inner stillness and second sight.  Healing powers and other magickal abilities may be given by the Faerie.  Be in tune to the subtle forces surrounding you and be willing to alter your lifestyle of excessive consumption to live in harmony with the natural world.  Be the transformation you seek.
  5.  Understand the Faerie culture, traditions, rules and prohibitions. You may be asked to fulfill certain tasks and as stated before, commit to inner changes of transformation.  You will be tested by the Faerie and undergo an ordeal of shadows and strange forces along the journey.  Transport to hidden realms every seven years may occur whereby you will be expected to pay a tithe or offering.  Enchantment goes without saying as one attunes to the distinction between the two worlds, illusion and vision.

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